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August 2010
During the summer we had some positive as well as negative news on the national economic front.  I released a poll to gauge if it reports of economic growth and signs of recovery were having any noticeable impact at the coalface of Irish business.  The ultimate litmus test is going to be employment, and more importantly, whether it is improving.  Augusts’ figures were disappointing despite Government spin that the rate of growth in unemployment has slowed.  The poll asked 'how long before recent positive economic news would translate into jobs growth', here are the results:

By Q3 2010 – 0%
By Q4 2010 – 20%
By end of Q2 2011 – 53%
By end of Q4 2011 – 13%
By end of 2012 – 13%

Perhaps the most positive interpretation from the response to the poll is that 73% see a return to jobs growth within 12 months from now.  We have been in official recession since July 2008 (see http://www.breakingnews.ie/ireland/mhqlsnauqlau/rss2/ ).  With 470,000 not at work, I am curious to know now what or who has the most significant role to play in getting people back to work.   As usual, all participation is welcome, and results will be published here in a few weeks time.

December 2009, January 2010

During this period I ran a poll on perceived marketing spend for 2010 compared or contrasted with same for 2009.  The poll was published through this website and my LinkedIn account.  The poll was sent to 100 Irish SMEs across a wide variety of sectors.  The results for the query 'will your marketing budget for 2010 be:' are as follows:

...less than 2009 11%
...greater than 2009 44%
...similar to 2009 39%
...hard to know yet 6%

In analysing this, it is great to see that a greater spend is the poll topper.  If the question was posed in January 2007, perhaps 90% would have foreseen an increase over 2006.  However, given that 39% are foreseeing spending similar amounts in 2010 than in 2009, collectively more than 4 of 5 businesses are spending the same if not more in 2010 than 2009.  This can be seen as a positive development.  Adding this to my own anecdotal evidence, I am inferring that this means that businesses perhaps have to spend more on marketing themselves to new sources of business as traditional custom has diminished.  I may expand upon this poll soon, and engage in a survey that captures what the spend patterns are.  I am guessing that traditional forms of advertising have in some measure given way to non-traditional forms of marketing such as physical networking, on-line media, e-mail campaigns and website investment.

My sincere thanks to all who participated.  I would welcome any comments or contributions, to do so, please click here.  Also, feel free to vote in my new poll on the top-right of this screen.

2010 Marketing budget poll bar chart

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